This is our experience/record of crossing the Peru-Bolivia border on Thursday, 3 September 2015. Our traveling party consisted of two people and two motorcycles. We arrived at 11:00am and were finished at 12:00 (or 1:00pm Bolivia time). This was a quiet crossing with no fixers. The only lines were for Bolivia immigration but they were short.
Border Name: Yunguyo
Closest major cities: Puno, Peru and Copacabana, Bolivia
Costs: $160 visa fee for US-citizens for Bolivia (based on reciprocity) and $2.20 for photocopies/printing
*Passport plus two photocopies
*Motorcycle title plus one photocopy
*Peru vehicle import form
*Bolivia tourist card and photocopy
*Bolivia visa stamp photocopy
*Print-out of accommodation reservation in Bolivia (our email confirmation for camping sufficed)
*Other items that can be requested in Bolivia: yellow fever certification, financial solvency (bank statement, credit card photocopy), itinerary, flight/bus information
Note: we keep all originals in individual plastic sleeves. We labeled these sleeves clearly to avoid confusion as to what was what, to keep original documents clean, and to differentiate what is original and what is a copy. All border-crossing officials have respected the sleeve.
Drive up to the chain across the road and park on the right or left.
Step 1 – Immigration: The immigration office is on the left (east side of road) and well-marked. Turn in your passport and tourist card. They will keep tourist card and stamp your passport.
Step 2 – Customs: The white Aduana building is across from immigration (on the west side of road). Go in and hand in your temporary vehicle import permit and they will review and stamp. They will give you one section to keep. The officer asked some questions about our time in Peru and where we went. They may ask for your proof of insurance; we were not asked.
Total time to exit was five minutes.
Drive down the road to Bolivia (through the archway) and park on the left just after the arch. The Bolivia border closes at lunch from 1:00-2:00pm which is 12:00-1:00 Peru time.
Step 1 – Immigration: Walk down the hill to your left to the immigration building. There was tourist cards to fill out inside on the table all the way to the right (green form). Fill out tourist card. They no longer required the visa form for US citizens (we had got them online, printed, and filled them out). At the far left window, hand over your tourist card, passport plus photocopy, passport photo, and US$160 in crisp bills. Then give them any other items requested. First I was asked for our itinerary but I advised that I didn’t have one since I had my own vehicle. I was then asked for hotel reservation print out which I didn’t have. I had to go to the internet/print shop (outside to the left) and print out copies of an email exchange securing camping outside La Paz. He then provided our visa stamps in our passports. Next go to the far right window and get stamped into the country (stamp on tourist card and passport).
Step 2 – Customs: The Aduana building is up the hill (to the left of immigration). The customs official’s office is the first door on your right after you enter the building. Hand in your passport plus copy, vehicle title plus copy, and a photocopy of your visa stamp and tourist card. The official will issue your vehicle permit. It is valid for 30-days. If you overstay the 30-day limit they will confiscate your vehicle.
Step 3 – Insurance: SOAT is not available for purchase at the border though it is required. We purchased insurance in La Paz at Seguros Illimani for Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay for a five-month period. The cost was $160 per motorcycle. The GPS coordinates for the insurance office are S16.49903, W068.13338 and the address is Loayza No 233 Edif Mcal de Ayacucho (this is the name of the building) Floor 10. The operations director (Daniel Arce) is a Bolivian/American and speaks perfect English and was very friendly and helpful. They required a copy of our passports and vehicle titles.